Legal Business Blogs

Revolving doors: White & Case lures A&O disputes veteran as McDermott expands energy group

Veteran litigation partner Lawson Caisley has joined White & Case after nearly nine years at Allen & Overy. Caisley typically advises large corporations, financial institutions and funds on all aspects of commercial litigation and investigations, such as post-acquisition disputes as well as fraud and white-collar crime.

Markus Langen, head of disputes for White & Case in EMEA, described Caisley as a ‘highly ranked lawyer with a strong international practice’ with ‘a track record for advising a number of the world’s largest global companies on their most significant disputes’. He added: ‘The depth of his experience and expertise across sectors and industries will add further prestige and bench strength to our team in London and EMEA.’

Also in London, McDermott Will & Emery has strengthened its energy group with the hire of partner Merrick White from King & Spalding. With over three decades of experience, White is a specialist adviser to clients in the oil and gas sector looking to develop projects and make acquisitions. He has a particular focus on inbound and outbound investments in south-east Asia.

Michael Poulos, partner and head of strategy at McDermott, said: ‘Merrick is a seasoned and versatile adviser across a broad spectrum of energy-related projects. His stellar industry experience and reputation in the market will provide a further boost to our expanding global energy and infrastructure practice.’

Wrapping up the City hires announced this past week, Shakespeare Martineau made a double appointment to boost its banking and restructuring practices respectively. Banking partner Russell Jarvis joins the firm from Harrison Clark Rickerbys, bringing with him more than 30 years’ experience in advising banks, sponsors and debt funds on a range of matters.

Formerly head of EMW’s restructuring team, partner Frank Bouette joins Shakespeares with experience of both contentious and non-contentious matters. He has previously worked for a variety of SMEs, directors, lenders and insolvency office holders on administrations, contract terminations and exit strategies.

Cooley has made a notable move in New York, hiring former federal prosecutor Russell Capone as a partner. Capone has spent the last decade serving at the highest levels at the US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, most recently as chief counsel to the US attorney and previously as chief of the Public Corruption Unit. He has experience of assisting the US attorney on a range of criminal matters, including white collar and cybercrime, securities fraud, public corruption, terrorism, civil rights violations, violent crime and sex trafficking.

Capone said that he had enjoyed working ‘across the table’ from Cooley’s white-collar crime team before, and commented: ‘This is the perfect opportunity to re-enter private practice, and I’m excited to leverage my trial skills as part of a diverse team that guides our clients through their most significant legal challenges.’

Elsewhere, Gowling WLG has signed a new co-operation agreement with Saudi Arabian firm Al Ghazzawi Professional Association (GPA), to give its clients access to local legal support in the region. For GPA, the tie-up will allow the firm to use Gowling’s international capabilities to expand the advice it can offer to clients. In terms of practice areas, the two firms are expected to collaborate on government advisory, intellectual property, TMT, corporate, energy and infrastructure, project development and finance, construction disputes and international arbitration.

The relationship will be led by Gowling UK partner Jonathan Brufal, and Tim Casben, managing partner in Dubai. Brufal said: ‘Our firm has considerable experience and strength in the Middle East and establishing a presence in Saudi Arabia is a natural step in our expansion strategy. The agreement with GPA will further bolster our expertise in the region and support clients to take full advantage of a wide range of commercial opportunities in Saudi Arabia.’

Finally, in Sydney, HFW has made a senior addition to its arbitration practice, hiring partner Jo Delaney from Baker McKenzie. Delaney is a seasoned arbitrator with a background in the construction, energy and infrastructure sectors. Nick Longley, head of dispute resolution for HFW in Australia, commented: ‘Jo’s arrival significantly strengthens our dispute resolution and arbitration offering, not just in Australia but across the Asia-Pacific region. Jo brings a wealth of experience and is highly regarded in the market.’